- Locate and protect your septic system area Talk to a septic installer or your local Health Department about the placement of your new septic system. Usually, an independent soil scientist will need to evaluate the soils to determine the best location.
Can you plant around septic tank?
Perennials and grasses (including ornamental grasses) work best around your septic tank and drain field. Their shallow root systems are less likely to invade the underground system and cause it damage. If you must grow trees and shrubs, shallow-rooted kinds are better to grow around septic tank drain fields.
How do I protect my septic tank?
- Regularly inspect and maintain your septic system.
- Pump your septic tank as needed.
- Keep your septic tank lids closed and secured.
- Be water-wise.
- Direct water from land and roof drains away from the drainfield.
- Landscape with love.
- Keep septic tank lids easily accessible.
What can you put around a septic tank?
Put plastic sheets, bark, gravel or other fill over the drainfield. Reshape or fill the ground surface over the drainfield and reserve area. However, just adding topsoil is generally OK if it isn’t more than a couple of inches. Make ponds on or near the septic system and the reserve area.
How do you landscape a septic tank cover?
Find what fits in your yard and climate.
- Plant tall native grasses with fibrous roots around the opening to conceal the tank lid from view.
- Place a light statue, bird bath or potted plant over the septic lid.
- Septic tank risers and covers are an alternative to concrete and blend into green grass.
Can you put mulch over septic tank?
Gardens. Landscape fabric, plastic, bark, or mulch should not be used over your septic system. These materials reduce air exchange while bark and mulch also retain excess moisture. Adding more than a few inches of soil over the drainfield, such as for raised beds, limits air exchange and can lead to compaction.
How can I hide my septic mound?
Plant shrubs or perennial plants on the berms around the mound or along the edges where the berms meet the flat part of your yard. Avoid planting shrubs or anything with deep roots on the mound itself.
What should you avoid with a septic tank?
You should not put these items into your commode:
- Cat litter.
- Coffee grounds.
- Cigarette butts.
- Dental floss.
- Disposable diapers.
- Sanitary napkins or tampons.
What are the do’s and don’ts of a septic tank?
DON’T flush material that will not easily decompose, such as hair, diapers, cigarette butts, matches, or feminine hygiene products. DO conserve water to avoid overloading the system. They kill the bacteria needed to decompose wastes in the septic tank and drain field. DO use substitutes for household hazardous waste.
Are long showers bad for septic systems?
Washing frequent, small loads of laundry or taking exceptionally long showers every day is all it takes to overload your septic system with too much water. The primary treatment tank needs time to break up solids before partly-treated water can enter the drain field.
Can you plant shrubs on a septic field?
Avoid growing water loving plants, shrubs, and trees near your septic system. Do not grow vegetables over your septic system because of the risk of bacterial contamination and the health risks association with it.
Can you grow grass over septic tank?
Grass Benefits Grass planted over a septic drain field prevents soil erosion and improves the exchange of oxygen and the removal of soil moisture. Turfgrass is ideal for planting over a septic drain field because its roots aren’t likely to clog or damage the drain lines.
Can you put pavers over a septic drain field?
You can’t build a paver patio on top of a septic tank, and doing so could be against the planning laws of your state or local area. Septic tanks can take very little weight without getting damaged, and you’ll also need access to the tank in the future too. You shouldn’t build a deck on one either.
Should septic tank lids be buried?
In most cases, all components of the septic tank including the lid are buried between 4 inches and 4 feet underground. Unless the septic tank has special risers that position the lid at ground level, you’ll have to dig for it.
Can you put anything over a septic field?
To maintain the integrity and longevity of your drainfield, you should never put anything heavy on top of any part of it. You shouldn’t even drive over the drainfield, as the vehicle can crush the drainfield lines. Heavy items cause soil compaction.
Can you put a trampoline over a septic tank?
Never place anything heavy over it, think sheds, or above ground pools, etc. It’s probably not the best place to set up your kids’ trampoline or swing set either. Keep the area around your tank free of trees and shrubbery as their roots can clog and damage the tank and lines.
3 Do’s & 3 Don’ts for Septic System Landscaping Projects
In addition to keeping your house healthy, landscaping is important in maintaining the aesthetics of your property as well. With the start of the new year, manyDallashomeowners are considering making changes to their landscaping. Working around or near your septic tank or original system is usually a good idea, but if you intend on doing so, there are a few things you should know and avoid doing.
Septic System Landscaping Do’s:
- Make sure to plant certain plants
- Mark your access hatch
- And keep in mind the planting distance.
1. Be Mindful of Your Plants
If you are planning to plant near your septic tank, the types of plants that you choose to use throughout the design process of your landscaping are critical considerations to keep in mind. Plants stretch their roots in order to locate water sources. Consider planting foliage that does not require a lot of water to be healthy. You would think that they are just your normal flowers and ground cover.
2. Mark the Location of Your Access Hatch
It is critical to understand where the access hatch to your septic system is located. If something goes wrong with your system or if your septic tank has to be pumped, call us right once. In any case, you would know where your hatch is located, which would prevent your entire yard from having to be uprooted for repairs. We propose that you place a potted plant above your hatch so that you can easily locate and remove it when the time is appropriate.
3. Plant Your Plants Close Together
Planting your plants in close proximity to one another can assist to avoid the formation of weeds in the surrounding region. Weeds, like other plants, have roots that actively seek for water, and their presence can cause damage to your septic system over time.
Septic System Landscaping Don’ts
- Avoid planting trees and shrubs
- Do not construct a pond
- Do not allow pedestrian traffic to pass through your landscaping.
1. Don’t Grow Trees and Shrubs
Plants such as shrubs and trees should be at the top of your list of things not to do. When it comes to nutrient-necessary roots, these plants are the most egregious offenders. If you do decide to include trees and bushes in your landscaping, consult with a landscaping professional who can assist you in placing these additions at a safe distance from your active system.
2. Avoid Installing Ponds
The construction of ponds or other water systems close to your septic tank or system is not recommended. Septic system repairs can be costly due to the complexity of these landscape decorations, which can easily interfere with the drainage system on your property.
3. Don’t Normalize Foot Traffic in the Area
A high volume of foot traffic over your septic system, including that of your dogs, is the last thing you want to do when landscaping around sewage systems. When there is a lot of foot traffic, the earth becomes compacted, which causes harm to the inner workings of your septic system.
Yepez Lawn Service Helps Keep Your Septic System Safe and Landscaping Beautiful
Don’t sacrifice the aesthetics of your landscape because of the location of your septic system. Contact the Yepez Lawn Service crew if you want a landscaping experience that takes everything into consideration. This year, we are looking forward to receiving your feedback and assisting you in creating the yard of your dreams.
Landscaping for Septic Systems
Septic systems that are properly built, put on the land, and serviced on a regular basis can survive for many years. When it comes to your septic system, prevention is key to maximizing its lifespan and minimizing its costs of operation. The two most common reasons of a malfunctioning septic system are improper (or a lack of) maintenance and physical damage to the system.
Protecting Your Investment: Inspecting Your Septic System contains detailed information on routine maintenance and inspection of septic systems (PDF). This information sheet explains how to landscape around your septic system in order to reduce damage to the system.
Plan Ahead to Protect Your Septic System
The design of your landscape should not interfere with the natural function of your irrigation system. Examine your yard with an eye towards the future. Plan to build a storage shed or other structure? Do you want to build a deck, patio, or anything else? Construction on or near your septic system might result in damage to the tank, pipes, and soil beneath the system. Sprinkler lines, decks, patios, storage sheds, sand boxes, swing sets, and other structures, whether paved or dirt, should be kept away from the septic tank, drainfield, and reserve area.
- It is also essential to have access to your septic tank and other components of your septic system in order to do maintenance and prepare the drainfield before beginning.
- Make use of your common sense and design your home around your septic system.
- Before commencing any landscaping work, make sure you check with Clark first.
- Call the Department of Environmental Health at 360-397-8428.
Marking Components for Access
Routine maintenance is an important aspect of keeping your septic system in good operating order, and it’s made easier when the components are clearly labelled and easy to find. Many landowners are concerned about the visibility of above-ground access ports on newer tanks, which are difficult to conceal. A tierred planter box or bench can be used to conceal these ports, and it can be simply relocated to enable for servicing to be performed. When it comes to older tanks, access ports are typically buried six inches to two feet down, making them difficult to discover when it comes time to pump.
Make use of risers, which may be obtained from local septic pumpers, to cover access ports, after which they can be disguised as previously stated.
Managing Water and Soil Properly
Downspouts and other surface water runoff should be directed away from your system. Water from your home’s septic system is the only type of water that it is intended to handle. Additionally, excessive rainfall, manual watering in large quantities, sprinklers, and ponds stress the soil, resulting in septic system failure. Irrigation systems and water features should be installed at least ten feet away from the edge of your irrigation system’s perimeter.
Vehicles and Equipment.
Prevent the amount of traffic that passes through the system in order to reduce soil compaction. Compacted soils retain less oxygen, lower the efficacy of soil organisms in treating wastewater, and diminish the overall effectiveness of the system.
It is important to keep vehicles bigger than a riding mower away from the drainfield to minimize soil compaction and damage to the leach line. If you have to cross the drainfield with a heavy vehicle, make sure the soil is dry and use track boards to distribute the weight evenly across the ground.
Compaction is also caused by large animals. Choosing to allow animals to graze on the drainfield area increases the likelihood of your septic drainfield being less effective. When animals are permitted to graze the drainfield during the rainy season, they should be removed before the grazing causes the soil to become exposed. Gardens. Landscape fabric, plastic, bark, or mulch should not be put over a septic system since they might cause damage. These materials, such as bark and mulch, limit air exchange while also retaining excess moisture.
A vegetable garden requires irrigation and involves constant cultivation and digging, both of which can cause damage to pipes and other components, especially if sections of your irrigation system are only six inches below the surface of the earth.
As a result, food gardens should be established in a different location.
Root vegetables can get into your drain lines.
Shallow-rooted plants that require little upkeep and require little water are the best choice for planting over a drainfield or near your septic system. Planting grasses or herbaceous vegetation that may be disturbed should be done over the tank so that you won’t be afraid to harm them if you accidentally damage them. The roots of grass and other herbaceous plants can aid in the removal of surplus moisture and nutrients from the soil, as well as the proper operation of the septic system. Plants that do not require division on a regular basis will reduce the amount of digging and potential harm to the drainfield.
It is possible to grow ornamental grasses in addition to keeping a typical lawn.
Other herbaceous plants can be utilized, but avoid those that demand a lot of irrigation on a regular basis.
Small-rooted plants that attract animals such as butterflies or birds can also be used in conjunction with larger plants.
To find more more about plants or gardening ideas, call the WSU Clark County Extension Master Gardners at 564-397-7725 or visit their website. Whatever plants you pick, your landscaping may be both visually appealing and low-maintenance, while also protecting your septic system from damage.
Landscaping Septic Systems
Table 1: Native plants with shallow roots that are ideal for use in landscaping sewage systems. Sources
- Septic System Management – Landscaping and Other Activities on Your Property – Well Water Program of the Oregon State University Extension G. Andrews’ Gardening with Native Plants was published in 2000. Clark County Public Works, Water Resources, and other departments Planting on Your Septic Drain Field – Virginia Cooperative Extension (2004
- Virginia Cooperative Extension). S. Day and E. Silva, eds. Landscaping Your Septic System – Washington Sea Grant Program (2013
- In English). T. King and J. Holdcroft, eds. Landscaping Your Drainfield – Washington State University Island County Extension, 2001. Maleike, R. (n.d.)
- Landscaping suggestions for those who have a septic system. Water Wastewater Program for the City of Seattle and the County of King. Landscaping Your Drainfield was published in 2005. Clallum County Health and Human Services
- Landscaping Your Drainfield– Thurston County Public Health and Social Services Department
- Clallum County Health and Human Services
Erin Harwood worked on the adaptation. Extension programs are offered to anyone, without regard to their financial status. Originally published in October 2005; updated in 2019. Notify your local Extension office if you find any evidence of noncompliance. Links to external websites are provided on our pages for the convenience of our visitors. It should be noted that WSU Extension is not responsible for the content of these external websites, nor does it monitor or regulate the information included on them.
Landscaping Around a Septic System
Unlikely as it may seem, the space around your sewage system does not contain any huge plants, patios, or other permanent objects. After all, the conventional and popular sense holds that you should avoid both constructing and heavy landscaping near a sewage system unless absolutely necessary. This is a wonderful rule of thumb to keep in mind as you go with your landscaping tasks because it is broad and generic in nature. Building swimming pools, patios, and huge trees in the vicinity of your sewage system is a certain way to ruin your day if you enjoy it when it operates correctly.
It’s true that there are excellent and poor methods to go about it, and that’s exactly what we’re going to discuss right now.
Ideally, I’d want to incorporate some landscaping around the septic system.
- Grasses: Yes, provided that the grass species does not necessitate the use of heavy machinery for upkeep. When it comes to flower beds, the answer is “yes.” However, if we’re talking about woody plants, raised gardens, or crops, this isn’t the case. No, trees are not allowed. Maintain a distance of at least 30 feet between trees and your septic system. Regular inspection and pumping of your septic system are recommended, as is checking for root systems that have infiltrated your septic system
The Grass is Greener…
Grass is a fantastic plant for the space around your septic tank. It joyfully absorbs excess moisture from the soil surrounding it, allowing your septic field to continue to treat wastewater properly and efficiently as a result of this. Although almost any sort of grass will suffice, you’ll want to make certain that it’s simple to maintain with frequent, light mowing. In an ideal situation, you’ll want to minimize the amount of maintenance to a bare minimum. Basically, you don’t want any type of maintenance that necessitates driving large mowers or other machines over pipes that are close to the surface of the ground.
Most likely, you or your client will take a look out at the large open space around the septic drain field and believe that it would be ideal for planting crops.
Here’s why: anything that grows there will have benefited from wastewater to grow, and do you really want to eat that tomato that sprung out from the fruits of your intestines to satisfy your hunger?
Raised beds can be used as an alternative in this situation, however they may not be the greatest option.
Any pipes or drain field that bear the weight of the raised garden bed may become compromised as a result of the weight of the garden bed. It is preferable to locate them to the side of the drain field, away from the septic tank, if at all possible.
Putting Down Roots
But what about plants that aren’t meant to be consumed? Is it permissible for me to establish a garden in the area just for aesthetic reasons? Well, it’s possible. However, you should stay away from any plants that require a lot of water to survive and develop. The trouble with really thirsty plants is that if they don’t receive enough water, they’ll send deeper roots into the ground, which might cause problems with your plumbing. What about plants that don’t require an excessive amount of water?
What makes you think you’re going to clog up those specific works?
Flowering annuals and perennials are an excellent choice; however, plants with woody stems should be avoided.
Trees + Your Septic System = Bad News
As you might guess, if planter boxes and heavy machinery may cause issues with your drain field and septic tank, the odds are fairly strong that planting trees is a terrible idea in general, too. Yes, you are accurate. Roots may cause significant damage to your pipes and septic tank in the same way that they do to your home’s foundation. Trees with deep roots, in particular, can do significant damage, so it’s better to keep them at least 30 feet away from your drain field and tank.
Maintenance on your septic system should be performed on a regular basis. Similarly, the landscaping around your septic system should be checked on a regular basis as well. In order to maintain the integrity of your tank, you should have it examined every three years and pumped every three to five years. Keep an eye out for any renegade roots that may have made their way into potentially harmful region while you’re getting this done. If a network of roots manages to thread its way into your system and infiltrate your pipes or tank, that is the last thing you want to happen.
Could you please tell me what native plants I can plant on the drain field?
A formal garden or an informal garden over your septic system might be challenging to design. You want a beautiful yard, but you don’t want it to come at the price of causing damage to your onsite waste water system. The majority of rural Michigan houses have an onsite waste water system (septic system), which consists of a septic tank and a water drainage field to dispose of the treated water once it has been treated. In a state with over 1.3 million septic systems, homeowners can choose to have their septic system installed in the front, side, or rear of their property, which will take up a significant amount of area in their backyard.
- If you follow a few simple dos and don’ts, you can keep your onsite water treatment system in good condition while still enjoying the landscape you desire.
- The use of just shallow-rooted flowers and grasses over the drain field will be emphasized by some sources.
- Another option is to choose plants that are drought tolerant so that the mound does not need to be watered as often.
- For the ordinary homeowner, this jumble of information can be perplexing and overwhelming.
“Big Bluestem was one of the grasses that was recommended for planting on the drain field. I believe that the root system may reach depths of up to 15-20 feet and is composed of fibrous roots. One client screamed, “That appears to be in direct conflict with the “shallow root system” suggestion!”
About septic systems
It is important to choose and arrange native plants in your landscaping with regard for their closeness to your septic system, just as you would with any other plant in your environment. Prepare yourself for the septic system by being familiar with its fundamental components before you begin working on your landscaping project. Sub-surface trench systems and mound systems are the two types of septic systems most commonly seen in Michigan. For initial separation and partial treatment, both systems contain piping that leads out of the home and into a septic tank.
- A soil absorption or drain field is a series of ditches lined with perforated pipe that is laid on a gravel bed or a sand bed. Drain field surrounded by a three- to four-foot mound of sand elevated above ground level.
These fields are structured to drain the external water from rain and snow melt out from the field rather than into it when they are properly designed and constructed. In turn, the surface soils in the drain field become drier than those in other parts of the landscape as a result of this phenomenon. This suggests that the plants you choose for this location should be drought tolerant. Avoid having a lot of people strolling or driving through your drain field. This causes the soil to become compacted, reducing its capacity to effectively drain water.
Irrigation systems should never be installed over a drainage field.
If your drain field area is flooded, has standing water, or accumulates rainwater, it is strongly advised that you stop here and contact for a septic examination.
Choosing plants that do not interfere with septic system operations
The ability to select the most appropriate plants for a given site is essential for creating a successful landscape. When selecting native plants for over drain fields, look for ones that thrive in arid climates such as the prairie. Plant material is available in a variety of forms, including seed mixes, chosen plants, and plugs. Native plants will absorb the increased nutrients in the soil, keeping them from entering the groundwater as rapidly as they otherwise would. Aside from that, because they do not grow in water-saturated circumstances, the roots of dry prairie plants do not block sewage system pipes.
These plants are looking for extra moisture and will most likely infiltrate holes and pipes that have been left exposed.
Their thin roots, on the other hand, need constant surface watering and frequent lawnmower traffic to keep the lawn in good shape.
Making the decision to plant a native garden is low-maintenance since it requires no fertilizer, mowing, or watering. It does need some weeding and the removal of seasonal dead plants, though. As an extra benefit, it will draw the attention of butterflies, bees, and other animals to your garden.
A few choices for a short grass dry prairie, may include:
- Wildflowers In sunny spots, plant the following forbs: butterfly weed, sky blue aster (also known as smooth aster), white aster (also known as white aster), sweet everlasting (also known as Canada milk vetch), Lance leaf Coreopsis (also known as purple prairie clover), Pale Purple Coneflower (also known as Rough Blazing Star), Royal Catchfly (also known as Royal Catchfly), Lupine (also known as Dotted Mint), Beardtongue (also Consider the following plants for shaded locations: Astilbe, Hardy Begonia, Turtle Head, Ferns, Sweet Woodruff, and Lady’s Mantle
- And Grasses and Sedges are a type of plant that grows in a grassy or sedgey environment. Rushes include Sideoats Grama, Little Bluestem, Prairie Dropseed, Plains Oval Sedge, June grass, and Prairie Brome, among others. Shrubs Over any component of a septic system, it is not suggested to plant any type of tree. In the event that you decide to plant trees and shrubs, make sure to pick an upland type and to plant it far enough away from the drain field or mound so the dripline of the mature tree will fall outside of it. Plants that bloom in spring include: Arum, Anemone/Windflowers, Crocus (including Hyacinths), Iris (including Lilies), Daffodils, and Tulips (Note: some of the bulbs listed have been naturalized, but not all of them are native.)
Finally a few reminders:
- Water-loving plants, bushes, and trees should not be planted in close proximity to your septic system. Growing vegetables over your septic system is not recommended due to the potential of bacterial contamination and the health hazards associated with it. It is not necessary to add more soil to your drainfield. It is necessary to have a septic examination performed if the soil in your drain field region is constantly moist or has standing water, or if you have water backing up into your home. It’s possible that your field failed
- It is essential that you maintain a layer of vegetation over your drain field in order to keep the dirt in place and keep the system running properly. When planting, try to avoid tilling the soil too much. It is possible that you will upset or damage your drain pipes.
More resources for planting over septic systems:
Michigan State University Extension: For a comprehensive list of Michigan native flora, see their website. For an overview and a plant list, see the Purdue Extension Bulletin HENV-15-W. Clemson Extension Bulletin: For a list of plants as well as some helpful hints. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) is responsible for Septic systems in Michigan are covered in detail in this section. As soon as you see any indicators of issue with your septic system, contact your local County Health Department and have your septic system drained and thoroughly examined at the earliest opportunity.
Related MSU Extension News articles:
- Waste management for household septic systems is covered in three parts: Waste management for household septic systems – Part One
- Waste management for household septic systems – Part Two
- Waste management for household septic systems – Part Three.
MSU Extension Educator Beth Clawson can be contacted for additional information about the Michigan Septic System Education program. For additional information on landscaping with native plants, contact Michigan State University ExtensionNatural Resources educators, who are working around the state to provide water quality educational programming and support to residents. You can reach out to an educator using MSU Extension’s “Find an Expert” search engine by searching for “Natural Resources Water Quality” in the keywords field.
Best Vegetation for Landscaping Around Septic Systems
Septic tank sites are not typically the greatest locations for creating a zen garden, although they can be considered in some cases. They are used to collect wastewater from toilets, showers, kitchen sinks, and washing machines in the home. Septic systems play a more beneficial function in many rural regions than they do in urban areas. It is possible for them to double as wastewater treatment plants. Typically located underground, a septic tank serves as a watertight container for storing all of the murky wastewater that is discharged from your drain pipes.
- In the end, the liquid that is trapped between the two layers is forced to exit through a conduit.
- Because of the bacteria invasion, many plants suffer root damage when they are planted in close proximity to these locations.
- However, landscaping these places may make the area appear more physically pleasing while also increasing its safety.
- All you have to do is figure out which ones.
Best Plants to Grow Safely Around Septic Systems
- Grain and weeds: Planting landscaped plants around these locations is very recommended. Plants help to minimize soil erosion by absorbing surplus rainfall from drains and other sources. Instead of leaving the land naked, you should plant lawn grass or even weeds. Creeping Charlie, jewelweed, perennials, and grasses are some of the other plants that are recommended. It is unlikely that the shallow root systems will be able to reach the drainage system. Perennials thrive in regions that receive plenty of sunlight. Shade-garden plants do better in locations with less sunshine than they do in areas with more sunlight. Perennials near Sewage Tank Drains: Because the surrounding environment is damp and salty, perennials such as bee balm, hollyhocks, and wild violets thrive in the vicinity of septic tanks. These plants thrive in these types of environments
- Consider Using Deer-Resistant Perennials, Spring Bulbs, and Ornamental Grass in the Area Around Your Septic System: If the plants around your septic system are frequently attacked by deer, you may want to consider using deer-resistant perennials, spring bulbs, and ornamental grasses that are not really a dining option for these creatures
Worst Plants to Grow Around Septic Systems
- At all costs, avoid planting food crops in the vicinity of a sewer or drainage system. In and surrounding septic systems, dangerous bacteria can be found that can leak into your food crops and even into your stomach through your crockery. Specify shallow-rooted plants and shrubs such as dogwood trees, Japanese maple trees, cherry trees, azaleas, boxwood shrubs, and holly bushes.
- Stay away from fast-growing trees with aggressively expanding roots, since they might cause damage to your property. These tunnels go deep into the earth’s crust in search of freshwater sources. If they are allowed to develop, they will eventually make their way into your drain pipes. Willow trees, Japanese willow bushes, aspen trees, birch, beech, elm, most maple trees (with the exception of the Japanese maple), ash trees, and tulip trees are examples of such plants. Tall trees: If your septic tank and drains are located near a wooded area, check sure that mature trees are not growing close to the tanks or pipes. As a general guideline, measure the distance between the tree and the septic system in feet and maintain the tree at least that distance away. For example, a 50-foot-tall tree should be kept at least 50 feet away from the drainage system, or the roots would infiltrate the septic system.
Keep in mind that the less you dig and garden in the vicinity of your septic tank, the better it is for both you and the system.
When you are sitting on the ground, make sure you are well protected. Wearing gloves and not digging too deeply are recommended. Better still, get professionals to complete the task for you to be on the safe side.
Since our establishment in 1986, we have been offering high-quality landscaping services to Parry Sound and Muskoka. Providing building services for both residential and commercial structures, we provide a wide range of options. We work in partnership with our clients to execute high-quality projects on time and under budget, while providing all of the necessary equipment to save you time and difficulties. Call us if you need landscaping services to make the area around your septic system safer and more attractive.
3 WAYS TO PROTECT YOUR HOME’S SEPTIC SYSTEM
Most homeowners’ septic systems, when correctly built and implemented, will be able to run for many years or even decades, with little or no maintenance. However, this does not rule out the possibility that these systems would be subjected to situations that will harm or degrade their capacity to work properly. Many homeowners are unaware that some activities have the potential to cause major damage to their septic system, or even leave it completely unworkable. These operations just need to take place in the space above the septic tank to be considered legal.
Do not use landscaping materials that have invasive root systems.
While it is a sight to behold, it may be lethal to any pipelines, septic tanks, or lateral lines that are in close proximity to it.
- Pine trees, including white and Monterey pine
- Hardwood trees, including maple, walnut, and beech
- Softwood trees, including bamboo and willow
- And a variety of other plants and trees. Some types of plants and vines that are utilized as ground cover include:
Invasive root systems are frequently attracted to the condensation that can accumulate on the outer surfaces of septic system pipes and connections, which can attract them even further. In the course of time, these roots can infiltrate joint seams and even develop fissures and breaches in the pipe’s surface. As soon as a root breaks through a pipe, more roots immediately penetrate the pipe and develop clogs, which eventually prevent the flow of waste and water from moving forward. Unless the vegetation is also removed from the pipe, clearing the root growth from the pipe is just a temporary solution.
- Septic systems can also be harmed by the weight of huge cars, massive cattle, or even a large number of people walking through them.
- It is for this reason that homeowners should refrain from parking automobiles, grazing large animals, or hosting regular large gatherings in the area where their septic system is installed.
- Stay away from home improvement projects that will interfere with absorption of nutrients.
- Homes with pools, hardscaped outdoor living areas, or recreational surfaces such as a cement or clay tennis court may be constructed in response to these demands of the owners.
- It is necessary for the liquid that goes from the septic tank to the drain field to be swiftly absorbed by the soil in the region where the system is installed in order for it to function appropriately and efficiently.
- Our team here at Allen Turner Septic Tank Service is always available to assist homeowners in better understanding how their septic system performs and what they can do to ensure that their system continues to function properly year after year.
For any queries you may have, or if you’d like to set up an appointment for septic tank cleaning or another service, please contact us right away. We look forward to chatting with you in the near future!
Safe Plants to Grow Over Septic Tanks & Drain Fields
When some trees and bushes are planted near septic tanks and drain fields, their vigorous roots can cause harm to the tanks and drain fields. Find out which plants are the most dangerous to cultivate near a septic system and which ones are the safest.
Plants Safe to Grow Over Septic Tanks and Drain Fields
Keep in mind that you should not become so concerned about the possibility of root damage to septic systems that you avoid planting in these places completely. It is not only permissible, but really desirable, to cultivate the appropriate kind of plants in this location. Plants will help to prevent erosion and will also help to absorb some of the surplus rainwater from the drainage system. Growing tall fescue grass, Kentucky bluegrass, or other lawn grass over that section of earth should be the bare minimum solution to the problem.
Plants such as creeping Charlie, stonecrop, and jewelweed will proliferate and cover a septic area effectively.
Because of their thin root systems, they are less prone to infiltrate and destroy the subsurface infrastructure.
It goes without saying that there are several instances of such plants, so you will want to limit down your options.
- If the location is sunny, try planting one of these 10 great perennials for sunny locations: However, if the location does not receive much sunlight, you will most likely be pleased with these shadow garden plants. Septic tank drain fields have soil that is sometimes wetter than usual, sometimes saltier than average, and sometimes a combination of the two. Make sure to cover both bases with perennials that can withstand both damp soils and salt, such as bee balm, hollyhocks, and wild violets. When it comes to plants growing over septic systems, deer will not turn their noses up at them
- Therefore, if you have a problem with this large pest eating your plants in your area, you will want to consider deer-resistant perennials and deer-resistant ground covers, as well as spring bulbs and ornamental grasses that deer do not eat
It is not safe to consume food crops that have been planted in the ground near a drain field since doing so may result in the consumption of hazardous microorganisms. It is preferable to plant shallow-rooted trees and bushes around septic tank drain fields if you must plant trees and plants. The Spruce is an example of a shallow-rooted tree or shrub. K. Dave’s / K. Dave
The Worst Plants to Grow Over Septic Systems
Planting huge, fast-growing trees is often discouraged. However, some of the greatest offenders are trees and shrubs with root systems that are aggressively seeking out sources of water, which makes them particularly difficult to control. They are not picky about the water source from which they draw their water, which means the pipes in your septic tank drain field are completely fair game. Weeping willow trees are a well-known example of this. There are several trees and bushes to avoid, however the following are only a few examples: If you have avoided planting any of the most dangerous plants right over your septic tank drain field, you should still be concerned about the consequences.
Any huge, mature trees that may be growing in close proximity to your septic system continue to pose a threat.
As a result, a mature specimen 50 feet tall should be at least 50 feet distant from the viewer.
In the event that this is not practicable, root barriers can be installed to try to prevent tree roots from accessing your septic drain field (similar to the bamboo barriers used incontrolling invasive bamboo). The Spruce Tree K. Dave’s / K. Dave
The Basics of How Septic Systems Work
Septic systems are used to treat wastewater in rural regions that do not have access to sewer systems. An underground, waterproof container, the septic tank is where wastewater from your toilets, showers, sinks, and clothes washer is stored after it has been removed from your home via a pipe. Solids (sludge) and scum are separated from liquids in a septic tank, which is intended to do this. Solids sink to the bottom of the container. The slime rises to the top of the heap. The liquids create an intermediate layer between the scum and the sludge, separating them from the other two layers.
- The introduction of more wastewater from the residence serves as a stimulus for their expulsion.
- Upon discharge, liquids are channeled into a much bigger portion of the septic system known as the “drain field,” “leach field,” or “leach pit.” Typically, a drain field is composed of a number of perforated PVC pipes that are installed in subterranean trenches.
- Drain field cloth can be used to protect dirt from getting into the holes.
- “Percolation” is the term used to describe how wastewater moves through the earth.
- The evaporation of excess moisture from the soil will take care of any excess moisture unless you (inadvertently) do something to hinder it.
- The Spruce / written by K.
Planning a Septic Field Garden
When it comes to planting near septic tanks, the drain field pipes are the most important thing to consider. If roots penetrate the perforations and clog the system, it is best to remove them immediately. All of the components of this meticulously calibrated system must be in good working order, or else the consequence is a complete disaster (and a costly one). While annual flowers such as impatiens are shallow-rooted enough to be used as septic-field plants, the fact that they must be replanted every year makes them less than ideal for this purpose.
If you are digging in a drain field, you should always wear gloves to protect your hands.
All of the following are terrible ideas because they may interfere with the regular evaporation process, which is responsible for removing excess moisture from the environment:
- Increasing the amount of soil in the region Using excessive amounts of mulch
- Providing more water to the plants than is strictly necessary
Septic Systems and Landscaping — Magneson Tractor Service Inc.
Your comprehensive guide to septic-safe flora. You’ve just finished installing your new septic system, and all that’s left is a muddy mess. Alternatively, you may get bored with the monotonous green scenery. You want to improve the appearance of your home while while keeping your yard septic-friendly. Here are some suggestions for landscaping and plants that are septic-safe. Why Should You Plant Near Your Septic System? It’s possible that you were intimidated by the prospect of planting near your septic system.
However, although invasive tree roots can cause havoc on leach fields, certain plants and landscaping can actually improve the effectiveness of your system.
For over your system and leach field, short-rooted plants like perennials and grasses are the ideal option because they are septic safe (including ornamental grass).
Furthermore, they enhance the exchange of oxygen in the soil, which is necessary for filtering the last of the germs from your wastewater before it is discharged.
Because of their thin root systems, they are less prone to infiltrate and cause harm to the subsurface system. Herbaceous (non-woody) ground coverings are also a fantastic option for creating a natural look. When determining what to plant, there are several factors to consider.
- If the location is bright, try planting one of these perennials for sunlit areas: If the location does not receive a lot of sunlight, you will most likely be pleased with these shade-garden plants. The soil in the vicinity of leach fields is occasionally wetter than usual, occasionally saltier than average, and occasionally both. Plant perennials that are tolerant of both damp soils and salt, such as bee balm, hollyhocks, and wild violets, to ensure that you cover all of your bases. As a result, if you find yourself in the same company as Snow White, you should consider deer-resistant perennials and deer-resistant ground coverings, as well as spring bulbs and attractive grasses that deer do not consume.
It is not safe to consume food crops that have been planted in the ground near a drain field since doing so may result in the consumption of hazardous microorganisms. Any trees or bushes that you plant should be placed as far away from your septic system as possible, regardless of how tall they are. For example, a tree that grows to be 30 feet tall will need to be placed at least 30 feet away from your septic system in order to be effective. It is preferable to plant shallow-rooted trees and bushes around septic tank drain fields if you must plant trees and plants.
- Flowers should be limited to blooming annual or perennial bulbs with short roots, or wildflowers if you want to put flowers.
- Try to stay with plants that are natural to your region (most of Paradise and Magalia are zones 89).
- Check out this site for a list of septic-safe trees organized by zone, or speak with a representative at your local garden shop and advise them that you are landscaping around a sewage system.
- They are capable of penetrating and clogging pipes, leach field lines, and even the tanks themselves.
- There is no need to water your plants any more than is absolutely essential, nor is there any need to add dirt to the surrounding area.
- Landscaping in the Surrounding Area Despite the fact that the remainder of your yard is not in direct touch with your septic system, it is crucial to design it correctly.
- Large trees should be removed from the surrounding area since their roots have the potential to spread far. All trees should be kept at least 100 feet away from your home and septic tank, according to the rule of thumb: Natural or man-made obstacles might be used to deter traffic from passing through your system. This is especially true when it comes to automobile parking. Make it crystal clear! Make sure you don’t park on your septic tank or drainage field. Extra water from your leach field may be diverted away from it through mulch, flowerbeds, rain gutters, and drains.
Just because you have a septic system does not imply that your yard must be devoid of vegetation. It is not even necessary to have only grass. Keep septic-safe plants in your yard to prevent the headache of a faulty system while still enjoying your yard and landscaping design.
septic system — Butte County Septic — Magneson Tractor Service Inc.
Welcome to the World Wide Web! This is the location where messages propagate rapidly, regardless of their legitimacy. However, this was occurring long before the advent of the internet, through the basic medium of word of mouth.
With the abundance of information available and flowing, it can be difficult to discern between realities and urban legends. We’ve chosen to put the record straight on a few common misconceptions concerning septic tanks and systems in order to help others from making the same mistakes.
Starting With a New Septic Systems Requires Seeding
What exactly is seeding? It does exactly what it says on the tin: it assists your system and bacteria in growing by providing “seeds,” or in this case organic material. Also, we’ve heard of everything under the sun, including flushing a whole pound of yeast, manure, worms, and other such methods of waste disposal. This is a fallacy! Your septic system does not require your assistance to get up and running. Simply said, the system must be followed. You have enough “seeding” powers in your human waste to get it started.
This takes us to the second myth we’ll look at.
Additives Keep Old Systems Running Great
You’ve undoubtedly heard someone make this assertion. Do you have an outdated system or a system that isn’t performing as efficiently as it should? Just add a few ingredients and you’re done! However, the idea that septic additives can perform miracles is a fallacy. Septic tanks that are properly balanced do not require any assistance. Some septic treatments that are commercially available either include corrosive pesticides that can cause harm to the bacterial colonies in your system or are pricey yeast extracts that are not effective (yes, like the stuff used to make bread).
This is especially useful if your family uses a lot of antibacterial and bleach-based products, which is something you should avoid, but that’s a topic for another discussion.
Pump Your Septic Tank every 5-7 years
A typical family may fill a septic tank to operational level in less than a week, without having to make any changes to their ordinary water usage. It is not necessary to pump the septic tank just because it is full or has reached a specific age. Simply let your healthy system to carry out its functions. In reality, as long as your tank is sized adequately for your home and your property is kept in good condition, your system will continue to break down and handle waste for many more years than you may expect.
Prior to booking a pumping appointment, you should always get your system examined.
There are a few situations in which you should refrain from pumping your tank, but we’ll cover those in more detail in a future blog article.
Once Installed, Septic Tanks Take Care of Themselves
Yes, this is correct! In conjunction with their biological processes and gravity flows, septic systems and tanks handle the majority of the job with little assistance from the homeowner. Because they are buried, they are readily forgotten. Despite the fact that you may not be required to take immediate action, your behaviors will have an impact on the overall health of your septic system.
You’ll Only Need One Septic System
In most cases, septic systems will not survive a lifetime. With adequate care and maintenance, systems can endure for 25 to 30 years on average. If you want your system to last as long as possible, learning how to do regular maintenance is priority number one. However, there are certain fallacies about septic systems that need to be dispelled. Understanding which stories are factual and which are nothing more than old wives’ tales can be difficult. Do you have any questions regarding some of the advice you’ve received?
Do you have a disturbing myth that you would want us to investigate?
County Septic to Sewer Projects
The use of septic systems has been found to be detrimental to our delicate Florida ecosystem since 2005, according to research. The failure of septic systems in Leon County, Florida, has been demonstrated to be a significant factor to the degradation of water quality in Wakulla Springs. Septic tanks in the Primary Springs Protection Zone have been upgraded or eliminated as a result of aggressive state grant applications by Leon County, which has sought funding to convert septic tanks to sewage systems.
- Wastewater from a residence goes into a septic tank, where heavy materials sink to the bottom and are disposed of.
- The liquid waste is then channeled through a distribution system, which is often a drainfield, where it is disseminated into the soil for final treatment and disposal before being recycled.
- Septic tanks that are not properly maintained can do significant damage to the ecosystems around them, since wastewater that is not adequately handled can contaminate surface and groundwater, as well as affect the cleanliness of lakes, rivers, and streams.
- The following are examples of signs of a faulty septic system:
- Water backing up into the drains of homes and businesses The presence of a strong odor near the septic tank and drainfield, as well as the appearance of bright green, spongy grass on the drainfield, even during dry weather
To understand more about how nutrients contaminate and flow into Wakulla Springs, have a look at this video produced by the City of Tallahassee. What Leon County is Doing to Make a Difference We have taken measures to lower groundwater nitrogen levels as part of our commitment to protecting our natural resources. This has been accomplished through the implementation of wastewater projects.
Leon County has actively and successfully pursued state grant monies to remove septic tanks from the Primary Springs Protection Zone as part of the implementation of our Fiscal Year 2017-2021 Strategic Plan. The following are top priorities for Leon County:
- Increase nitrogen impacts in the Primary Springs Protection Zone by identifying cost-effective and financially feasible solutions, such as developing a septic tank replacement program and evaluating a requirement for new construction to use advanced wastewater treatment systems
- And, implement the adopted Basin Management Action Plan (BMAP) for Wakulla Springs, which includes bringing central sewer to Woodville and putting in place requirements for improved water quality.
Up till now, Leon County has surpassed its objective of improving or removing 500 septic tanks, having completed 610 renovations or eliminations of sewage treatment plants thus far. Currently, construction is approaching completion in the Woodside Heights community, and septic to sewer design is proceeding in the Belair, Annawood, Yon’s Lakeside, and Idlewild developments, in addition to in the Woodville Rural Community and the Woodville Rural Community. It is planned to update the septic systems in the Wilkinson Woods neighborhood, which will also lower the nutrient loads from the existing dwellings in the region.
Grants for Educational Purposes With 2019, Leon County was awarded a Small Community Wastewater Treatment Grant from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) to assist in the creation of a Wastewater Treatment Feasibility Analysis for the Upper Wakulla River Basin Management Action Plan Focus Area.
In order to receive the grant, Leon County must conduct a septic system inventory, assess existing wastewater treatment capacity and infrastructure, including potential infrastructure upgrade and expansion options, as well as evaluate cost-effective project solutions, financing alternatives, as well as potential ratepayer and homeowner consequences.
As a result of this project, we will be able to provide suggestions and give guidance on which sort of wastewater technology should be employed to enhance current buildings and future projects in order to improve water quality throughout the unincorporated region.
Timeline for the project: Contractor selection will take place in December 2018.
Presentation to the County Commission is scheduled for April 2020.
To find out if your address qualifies for a grant-funded septic-to-sewer conversion project, visit this page.